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5 Best Ways To Relax in Brisbane

Home > Brisbane > Beaches | Cafes | Lists | Parks | Walks
by Roy Chambers (subscribe)
Lover of all things interesting and new
Published May 10th 2016
Here are my 5 favourite ways to relax in Brisbane
5 Best Ways To Relax in Brisbane

Life can be stressful. But a stressful day or week can be countered by doing something relaxing in the evening or weekend. Here are 5 great suggestions on how to relax in Brisbane.

There are many ways and places to relax in Brisbane
There are many ways and places to relax in Brisbane


Massage

The obvious way to relax is to head for a massage. There are many types of massage in Brisbane and not all places are equal. Many rely on barely trained massage therapists and are okay if you just want a relaxation massage.

Buddha decoration at Aria Natural Therapy
Buddha decoration at Aria Natural Therapy


Noriko, from Aria Massage Therapy in the city, explained to me the benefits of seeking out professional massage. People go to Aria Massage in their lunch breaks for a quick neck and shoulder massage just to relax, but a full therapeutic massage will include a diagnosis of any core underlying problems. By treating these, along with the general benefits of massage, you will leave feeling better and more relaxed.

Beaches and coastal areas

For me the sea is very relaxing. Despite being a coastal city, access to the sea in Brisbane can be a little limited. But there are a number of nice coastal areas and even a few beaches.

Probably my favourite place just to relax is Nudgee Beach. Not really a beach at all, but a nice little coastal village. People head to Nudgee Reserve to relax, walk on the mudflats at low tide or wade in the water at high tide. You can also do the 2 km walk around the Nudgee Wetlands.

People relaxing at the park in Nudgee Beach
People relaxing at the park in Nudgee Beach


Another like park is Wellington Point. This great little park is a wonderful place to relax. There is a little beach that you can swim at during high tide. The highlight is going on a relaxing walk on the sandbar to King Island at low tide (not so relaxing if you don't check the tide times and the tide comes in before you get back to Wellington Point).

Wellington Point and King Island
Wellington Point and King Island


The Manly and Wynnum area is a nice coastal stretch with a couple of small beaches and a wetlands area. Manly tends to be quite busy, so to relax I normally head to Wynnum.

Relaxing at the waterfront in the Wynnum and Manly area
Relaxing at the waterfront in the Wynnum and Manly area


The coastal stretch between Shorncliffe and Brighton has long been a popular destination. The mudflats extend far out to sea and are a popular place to walk at low tide. Sandgate has a great collection of cafes, restaurants and bars. There are also a few parks and wetland areas in Sandgate that are worth strolling around,

Walking on the mudflats at Sandgate
Walking on the mudflats at Sandgate


Further North, Woody Point is also a great spot to relax. You can walk in the park by the water or sit on the jetty. Don't forget to check out the Gayundah Wreck off Gayundah Esplanade.

Looking at Woody Point from Redcliffe
Looking at Woody Point from Redcliffe


North of Woody Point is a stretch that includes Margate, Redcliffe and Scarborough. This stretch has a continuous footpath or boardwalk for people who like to cycle and walk. You can also enjoy the sands and splash or swim in the water on warm days. Redcliffe is the main location for cafes, but you can also find fish & chip shops and cafes intermittently the waterfront stretch.

A couple and their dog having a relaxing stroll on Margate Beach
A couple and their dog having a relaxing stroll on Margate Beach



Parks

Parks are the obviously place to relax, though some parks are more relaxing that others. The Brisbane Botanic Gardens (the one at Mt Coot-tha, not the City Botanic Gardens in Brisbane) has winding paths around ponds and streams. The Japanese Garden is a little cultured oasis among within the Gardens. However to really relax I prefer to head to theAustralian native gardens at the back. Fewer people come here so it is a great spot to relax by the lake.

The Japanese Gardens in the Brisbane Botanic Gardens is a nice place to relax
The Japanese Gardens in the Brisbane Botanic Gardens is a nice place to relax


Another park that is perfect for a relaxing walk is Forest Lake Park in the suburb of Forest Lake. It is about 3 kms around the lake. In the morning it can attract quite a few boot campers doing the lake run, but at other times you can just stroll around without interruption.

Dragon Sculptor at Forest Lake
Dragon Sculptor at Forest Lake


Temples and Churches

People these days often forget temples and churches as a place to go to relax. Some are only open for services while others remain open for people to go and pray, meditate or simply relax.

In the city St Stephen's Cathedral is known by many office workers as the place to find a place to sit and enjoy their lunch. The grounds are a small green oasis in the CBD. Church leaders have done their best to accommodate people who just want to sit their and relax, recently adding extra benches. The cathedral itself is often open for people to pray, except when there are services. The adjoining chapel is also open to the public most of the time.

St Stephens Cathedral and grounds is an oasis to relax in within the CBD
St Stephens Cathedral and grounds is an oasis to relax in within the CBD


One of the most relaxing places that I know in Brisbane is the Chung Tian Temple in Priestdale. The sprawling temple complex is set on beautiful grounds that back onto bushland. You can wander the grounds or mediate in one of the meditation or prayer rooms. If you prefer you can enjoy a vegetarian meal and coffee at the Water Drop Teahouse.

The Chung Tian Buddhist Temple is a nice place to relax
The Chung Tian Buddhist Temple is a nice place to relax


Coffee & Cake

One of the best ways to relax is just sit down with a cup of coffee or tea, and some cake. Some cafes are hives of activity, and while a great place to socialise, are not that relaxing.

My favourite cafes to relax in are usually outdoors.
One of my favourites is the Queensland Art Gallery Cafe. Set in the galleries sculptor garden, it is a little patch of green with a water feature running through it. It is surrounded by walls that cut you off from the hustle of the world.

The garden and water feature at the Queensland Art Gallery Cafe
The garden and water feature at the Queensland Art Gallery Cafe


Other cafes to look for are those that have big comfortable sofas or chairs. Yes I know milk crates and benches are trendy at the moment, but they are not really relaxing. One that comes to mind is the Java Lounge in Paddington. That is, if you can score one of the sofas.

The State Library of Queensland Cafe has sofas, soft chairs and padded benches inside
The State Library of Queensland Cafe has sofas, soft chairs and padded benches inside


Oh one other cafe with lots of sofas is the State Library of Queensland's cafe. I don't find the surrounds that relaxing, but the chairs, sofas and padded benches are very comfortable. They also have nicer food that the Queensland Art Gallery Cafe.
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